Best travel rugs: Horse & Hound’s tester ranks her favourites

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  • The best travel rugs are versatile. They need to be able to keep your horse cool while he’s travelling, as well as being breathable and wicking, but they also need to keep your horse warm if he’s standing around at a competition. As with any rug, a good fit is important, as is good quality materials and fastenings. The fastenings should also be easy to use as you’re likely to find yourself putting it on and taking it off in some trickier than usual situations — the last thing you want on the morning of your dressage at a new venue is a rug that’s tricky to take off. A really good rug will last and you’ll find yourself using it time and time again, whatever the season (note: these rugs were tested in summer months). Finally, if you’re planning on travelling your horse in your new rug to competitions, a smart one is a real bonus.

    Horse & Hound has been working with a number of professional riders, trainers and yards to put a range of products to the test in a busy yard environment. And here are the results…

    Horse & Hound’s pick of the best travel rugs 


    Bucas Panel Prize cooler

    RRP £50

    Bucas Panel Prize cooler review

    “This rug performed excellently. It was really breathable — ideal for a travel rug — and the material was good quality overall.”


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    WeatherBeeta Thermic Quilt standard neck cooler

    RRP £64.99

    WeatherBeeta Thermic Quilt standard neck cooler review

    “Everything about this rug was good. It fitted well, and I loved the silky chest lining — great if your horse is prone to rubbing.”


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    Shires Tempest Original Thermo Quilt rug

    RRP £49.99

    Shires Tempest Original Thermo Quilt rug review

    “It was breathable, so still OK to use in the warm weather despite its cosier look. This rug didn’t move, which was great, and neither did bedding get stuck to it.”


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    LeMieux Carbon cooler rug

    RRP £49.95

    LeMieux Carbon cooler rug review

    “This rug was an excellent fit for my horses. It’s breathable and the material is good quality, although the fastenings did get stuck occasionally.”


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    Back On Track mesh rug

    RRP £194

    Back on Track mesh rug review

    “It fitted my horses really nicely and the fastenings were well made. The chest area was rather thick, but it was breathable and it looked really smart. It certainly matched up to the description.”


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    Herbb Body Hugger Original rug

    RRP £60

    Herbb Body Hugger Original rug review

    “This rug had no fastenings apart from Velcro and is put on over the head, which can be tricky, particularly at a competition or while in a horsebox. That said, it fitted my horses well and was breathable.”


    Read full review >>

    Rhinegold Smart Tec rug

    RRP £59.90

    Rhinegold Smart Tec rug review

    “This rug was breathable but quite warm, so may be better in cooler temperatures. It felt really soft and fleecy, which was really nice, plus it definitely performed better than a standard fleece rug.”


    Read full review >>

    Meet the product tester

    Jo Rimmer headshot

    Jo Rimmer has evented up to five-star level. She now combines competing with producing young horses and training riders of all ages. She is based at Fontmell Parva, Dorset, alongside her daughter Jess. The yard has a reputation for high standards (horses) and high spirits (staff).

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